Full text of Press Release of the Combined Parliament Protest Groups for 1 March 2022.
Parliament Protesters remain resolute, call on police to practice their own core values.
The New Zealand police are more concerned with maintaining a smear campaign against the protestors than undertaking honest policing.
This behaviour is intentional, manipulative and not in keeping with the New Zealand Police Values which champion:
- Respect – treat others as they would want to be treated, to uphold individual rights and honour their freedoms;
- Integrity – we are honest and uphold excellent ethical standards, to build trust and confidence in the communities we serve;
- Empathy – walk in their shoes – we seek understanding of and consider the experience and perspective of those we serve.
NZ Police Values document is located here.
The time is now for the Police to practice what they preach, to live by their own values, rather than give lip service to a pretty coloured pamphlet.
The protestors are resolute in their demands (mandates must go), and remain peaceful and present.
The government’s refusal to meet with protestors because they are behaving “illegally” is premised on Trevor Mallard’s trespass notice for a peaceful protest, and supposedly vehicle blocked streets.
However these are misdemeanours at best, as opposed to outright criminal activity, which is how things are being presented to the public.
Despite wall to wall statements by police (repeated countless times by mainstream media) that the site is unsanitary, in the early hours of this morning police raided the protest site – damaging and removing showers that had been erected. Not only was this theft of private property, it is directly at odds with their concerns about sanitation. It remains unclear which laws this shower block was breaking.
Despite regular contact with Police on a daily basis via a dedicated communications channel, today Police failed to mention that 300-600 Public Safety Unit trained officers from around the country have been sent to Porirua for special training during the last 24 hours. Police have said the contingent represents a routine replacement of officers but the co-operative protest groups remain very concerned that Police plan to tear gas and/or water cannon them overnight in order to storm parliament grounds and clear the protest site.
It is now more than a week since Police told the media that protestors had sprayed an ‘unknown substance’ into the faces of three officers who had to be hospitalised. Footage taken by people in the crowd more or less confirms it was instead ‘friendly-fire’, with a video showing an officer indiscriminately using pepper spray that blew back on his colleagues. However, both mainstream and social media widely reported that a protestor performed this harm.
Police assured both media and protest liaison they would advise the media what the substance was. But they have not.
Given the day the incident occurred, the Prime Minister sought – and achieved – massive political capital by accusing the protestors of appalling behaviour, if it transpires that Police are deliberately dragging their feet over revealing the true story, then both Police and the Prime Minister owe the protestors very public apologies.
The Police have blocked the service vehicles from emptying portaloos which has led to protestors plumbing the toilets into the sewer mains to stave off an actual public health hazard. They made this decision in the full knowledge their actions would create a public health issue. Police know approximately 20 percent of people on site are young children and those aged 60 plus and over 55% of people at site being women.
All of the above is evidence of the police’s determination to maintain public perceptions that the site and protestors represent “a river of filth”. Last night’s removal of the showers and the previous stopping of servicing of portaloos is petty, and has nothing to do with maintaining public order and safety.
We also call out the Prime Minister for her role in being complicit in this incessant PR campaign to present an image of the protestors as deplorables.
New Zealanders should be disgusted about the depths this country is descending into. Canada became hated globally for Trudeau’s strong-arm tactics. Ardern is leading New Zealand down the same track.
The hypocrisy of hate-labeling protestors and persistent use of coordinated, blatant smear tactics backed by outright subversion by Police is only driving more Kiwis to distrust this Government and is at odds with their own Police Values of empathy, respect and integrity.
***End of Press Release***
This communication summarises the agreed position of groups representing the majority people who have travelled and stayed at Parliament over the past two weeks:
- Convoy 2022 NZ
- Freedom Alliance
- New Zealand Doctors Speaking Out with Science
- New Zealand Teachers Speaking Out with Science
- Outdoors & Freedom Movement
- The Freedom and Rights Coalition
- The Hood NZ.
- Voices for Freedom
Image Credit: Paul and Jessica Jones @LibertyBites